Workplace socializing is productive?

An interesting article published in the Gallup Management Journal posits that workplace socializing actually increases work productivity.

Here’s the sides of the debate:

Every March, we hear dire warnings about workplace productivity lost to water cooler chats. In 2008, Challenger, Gray & Christmas estimated that the productivity lost to NCAA March Madness in the U.S. would cost the economy as much as US$1.7-billion. Idle chatter, it seems, is an expensive waste of workplace time.

Well, Alex (Sandy) Pentland, PhD., of MIT would beg to differ. In fact, Dr. Pentland, the Toshiba Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT and the faculty director of MIT's Digital Life consortium, and Benjamin Waber, a doctoral candidate at the MIT Media Lab, have found that workplace chatter, even the idle kind, increases productivity.


What has been your personal experience?

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